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Born Rich

2010-09-07 15:00:24.907226+00 by Dan Lyke 4 comments

Ages ago, Chris had mentioned this documentary, and then SE linked to the Google Video version of Born Rich. A documentary by Jamie Johnson, heir to the Johnson & Johnson fortune, about him and his friends coming to grips with their lives. Some interesting soul searching. And some extremely shallow people.

[ related topics: Video ]

comments in descending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2010-09-12 02:01:31.527226+00 by: Dan Lyke

It wasn't clear to me that "shunned out of the polo club" was indeed the worst, I'd imagine that if your enemies lawyered up life could get to be a pain in the ass, but, yeah, at worst you'd end up like the rest of us...

It does speak to the strength of needing peers.

I also find it interesting that, love or hate Donald Trump, or even scoff at his investment prowess, several people have suggested that he'd have done better if he'd just left his father's legacy in the buildings it was in and put the remainder in a mutual fund, at least he tried and continues to try things.

I wonder if that's the difference between newer money and fortunes left from the gilded age?

#Comment Re: made: 2010-09-11 19:47:09.819226+00 by: ebradway

After watching that crappy YouTube, I just found Born Rich on Hulu. Doh!

#Comment Re: made: 2010-09-08 00:07:09.343226+00 by: ebradway

What amazed be was that these weren't just wealthy kids. These were insanely rich families. There wasn't much the kids could possibly do to truly threaten their easy life. That was the nature of the conversation between the guy making the film and his father. The worst that could happen is they'd be shunned out of a polo club.

Society has constructed all kinds of obstacles to make it difficult to do much more than work hard and live well. Once you no longer have to work hard, the obstacles become traps. It's really an interesting lesson for people who aren't rich - that these pits of vanity are really just that... Getting past squandering what little wealth you can generate on vanity just might give you a boost above society. Maybe even allow your children to have to deal with not having to work...

#Comment Re: made: 2010-09-07 22:46:08.675226+00 by: Dan Lyke

Also of note: The Moth Podcast: Jamie Johnson: Fable of Fortune. In which he tells how his father once made a documentary on Johnson & Johnson's involvement in South African apartheid, and then buried it when he was told that it might impact his income stream.

What does it mean when, rather than being told "strive", their culture is telling these kids "be shallow and superficial and don't do anything that'd threaten your easy life". We don't have a free market, in the whole transition from an agricultural to an industrial economy we've never really had a free market, so what does it mean that we've structured an economic system to take the offspring of the most successful world changers and told them to live frivolous lives...?